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Chaos, oscillation and the evolution of indirect reciprocity in n-person games

, : Chaos, oscillation and the evolution of indirect reciprocity in n-person games. Journal of Theoretical Biology 252(4): 686-693

Evolution of cooperation among genetically unrelated individuals has been of considerable concern in various fields such as biology, economics, and psychology. The evolution of cooperation is often explained by reciprocity. Under reciprocity, cooperation can prevail in a society because a donor of cooperation receives reciprocation from the recipient of the cooperation, called direct reciprocity, or from someone else in the community, called indirect reciprocity. Nowak and Sigmund [1993. Chaos and the evolution of cooperation. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 90, 5091-5094] have demonstrated that directly reciprocal cooperation in two-person prisoner's dilemma games with mutation of strategies can be maintained dynamically as periodic or chaotic oscillation. Furthermore, Eriksson and Lindgren [2005. Cooperation driven by mutations in multi-person Prisoner's Dilemma. J. Theor. Biol. 232, 399-409] have reported that directly reciprocal cooperation in n-person prisoner's dilemma games (n>2) can be maintained as periodic oscillation. Is dynamic cooperation observed only in direct reciprocity? Results of this study show that indirectly reciprocal cooperation in n-person prisoner's dilemma games can be maintained dynamically as periodic or chaotic oscillation. This is, to our knowledge, the first demonstration of chaos in indirect reciprocity. Furthermore, the results show that oscillatory dynamics are observed in common in the evolution of reciprocal cooperation whether for direct or indirect.


PMID: 18371983

DOI: 10.1016/j.jtbi.2008.02.007

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